INTRODUCTION: The New Roman Catholic Primate of Poland, Archbishop Jozef Glemp, on Thursday (24 September) took formal possession of the Arch Diocese of Warsaw.
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Background: INTRODUCTION: The New Roman Catholic Primate of Poland, Archbishop Jozef Glemp, on Thursday (24 September) took formal possession of the Arch Diocese of Warsaw. The Primate, who is 52, became the city's twelfth Archbishop in a ceremony at Warsaw Cathedral.
SYNOPSIS: Most of Poland's Cardinals and leading churchmen were at the ceremony. Monsignor Glemp was the late Cardinal Wyszynski's private secretary for several years before he himself was named Primate of Poland by Pope John Paul in July. The new Archbishop, like his predecessor Cardinal Wyszynski, is expected to continue the Polish Church's strong support for the free trade union movement Solidarity. The Archbishop is likely to take a keen interest in Rural Solidarity - he used to undertake pastoral work on Poland's state farms.
Archbishop Glemp was the youngest of Poland's ordinary bishops when he was named as Cardinal Wyszynski's successor. His inauguration as Primate of Poland took place two weeks ago in Gniezno, the birthplace of Polish Christianity. Warsaw's new Archbishop is an accomplished linguist, fluent in Italian, French and German and some English. Ordained in 1956, he served two years as a parish priest before going to Rome to study. He returned to Poland with doctorates in both civil and canon law. He will need all his intellectual ability if the Roman Catholic church is to weather Poland's latest crises.